tv Washington This Week CSPAN July 6, 2014 7:00pm-8:01pm EDT
acted, but the extent that he this is not something i support, these individuals who ran these prisons should be charged, and not the scapegoating kind of process. if you take that kind of step, that is good, and that is why people are engaged in peace negotiations elsewhere, and don't want to talk about this. look, youre and say, should be talking about accountability measures. what are you going to do about it? what you going to do about these out-of-control soldiers or political zealots or extremists? what is your action on that? to the extent that you come forward with plans that would increase your -- the chance that you wouldn't be a target for prosecution, keeping in mind that it is also any international prosecutor, they
are vested with discretion about what cases does brooke -- what case is appropraite. not only did they stop crime, isy also -- this challenging, given the state we are in in syria. to getis never too late right on that kind of issue. that is far better than continuing. opponent, as last his father dead -- we are way beyond that, this has spread, hundred 60,000 dead, millions displaced. 160,000 dead, the millions
displaced. it will remain a tense and conflicted situation. the idea that he can kill this way -- kills hi way out of this thing is ridiculous. >> you mentioned a lot of inquiry. crimes andat war crimes against humanity in syria incenot exclusively the prov of the regime, that there have been other bad actors as well. if there, in terms of international law and in terms a judicial proceedings, distinction to be drawn between state actors and nonstate actors? in other words, if one could get would heds on one --
be subject to the same kind of procedures that the president of the republic might be? or is there a distinction? >> in the love that we follow, there is no distinction. -- in the law that we follow, there is no station. in the international court for sierra leone, the people that we prosecuted there, the leaders, we prosecuted for crimes committed when they weren't in state power. found guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity and other violations of international law. international human rights law works differently when it comes to these -- but when you talk about atrocity crimes, both --areare -- all sides
equally subject to those laws. could be heldisis responsible in terms of the kind of evidence that this organization has put out on youtube and other places, of cold-blooded killings of individuals in public view, boasting about those particular killings. from a high level clearly aware of them and condoning them. you got a good case right now. you could take it to a judge tomorrow if you had a court. >> in that regard, if you think is the statetions, of the existing documentation right now, in your view, sufficient to move forward in various avenues?
whod use a little bit about was actually involved in the collection of documentation on war crimes, crimes against humanity in syria? how many cooks are there in the kitchen? is there, somewhere, a coordination mechanism in all of this? so that someone at least knows what is coming in? is it all assembled in one place? >> their efforts to coordinate these things -- it it is consultative meet on have a court that has been given jurisdiction, and he wants to collect everything that is available, and works very closely with syrians. my first engagement in this issue was going on in istanbul, and other lawyers that had just come out of the conflict, some moving back and forth across the border. what kind of evidence was
important for proving responsibility and for others -- and communicating to them the importance of abiding by international law. that theyportant respect civilians, that just because a member of their community is killed in cold blood that they don't take action against an innocent person. that is something we encourage. in april, 2012, secretary -- that has been well established, funded by the united states. and is serving as a clearinghouse, providing guidelines and expertise to various other groups that are doing the collection. -- a sort ofshed network of contacts.
they have been very active, they have been supported by syrian justice and accountability center, it now has a budget of $6 billion a year. focusing onically linkage efforts. if you look at the international trials. it was because of the absence not that someone was raped or murdered, it is connecting the killersween the retail and the person at the wholesale level who was responsible. you've got to have that kind of linkage. this group is focused on the linkage and it has collected hundreds of thousands of pages of documents from security services and political committees, as they have followed to the opposition. they have been able to get the
documents out of the country. and it has analyzed them. a quarter of its dossiers are on the opposition, specifically on isis but also on others. evidence. -- itommission of inquiry of collected 3000 statements victims and survivors of these crimes. sources, thatn of kind of material can be made available, at least for future prosecution. given the fact that what we have done of the international level is often talked about representative times, we can't prosecute everything, we prosecute the strongest cases you have of enslavement, the laois and, child soldiers, whatever -- the drove is already
rich enough. -- the trove is already rich enough. ortant to imp collect the information. >> the tactical situation on the ground in syria these days seems to be not very favorable to the opposition. some people are coming to the conclusion that the assad regime has essentially won. the questions of accountability are really not terribly relevant. i am wondering, in your own discussions with syrian opposition, is this question come up about the relevance of
accountability data? and given the sheer quantity of evidence that has been collected, as this, and anyway, way, inhibit the ability of the united states in the future to work with the assad regime, if it becomes a more or less permanent feature? there are people out there who are saying that we should go back, strike some kind of a deal. was kind of inhibition is created by the sheer volume of evidence? the truth is undeniable. we have tontally, recognize that what we have with this regime and its key actors,
its legitimacy, its ability to serve the public of syria is gone. if ever it were there. and frankly in my discussions at the time, peace negotiations aren't moving forward. people are even stronger on the accountability issue. is he is going to the security council of the u.n. in may. because it is so important to get this information out there and have it understood, that this kind of conduct can't be the conduct that enable someone to maintain power. our wholetter of global system, the protection of the rights of victims, a matter of protecting civilians. everything that we work for, everything we have struggled to do, is put in danger if this kind of conduct is rewarded. all the more reason for
peopleability, to say that commit conduct like this need to go, in they will face consequences. even if they don't go there will be consequences. >> thank you. i would like to offer the audience an opportunity to pose questions. as ii would ask is that, designate you to pose a question, please pose a question and be as brief as you can, and state your name and your affiliation. first in the back. hi. i have two very specific questions. by versailles does just want to have a reminder -- please referred to isis as a third noty, because they are
interested in the evolution. i think it is fair to the rebel alliance for them to be seen as a third-party. thequestions i have -- intervention in bosnia was justified by using the term accident aside. -- acts of genocide. cap the acts of the assad -- the ethnic cleansing that took part in the country, could it be counted as acts of genocide, as does this justification give the crimes that are happening more urgency, more legal immediacy, that puts them above the categorization of
mass slaughter? the second question is at what -- at one point it was issued a i can't member the exact number,, but he said that all crimes perpetrated by members of the security establishment, and that means soldiers, policemen, members of the public militia, all of the crimes will be granted amnesty. so within the context of their jobs, if a soldier kills, tortures, steals, rates, -- bees, always crimes will not considered, the soldiers will have amnesty. legally't that make,
responsible, bashar al-assad for all the crimes since the beginning of the revolution to today? doesn't that help in the prosecution to have that decree and refer to it? in a sense, you don't even need a chain of command anymore. you just have this decree in which the president of the country is basically telling the members of security establishment, do what you want. >> if i could go ahead and respond to that. a rather long question. i could respond to several at the same time. first of all, i don't want to indicate that isis is part of the rebels alliance that is fighting for a democratic transition in the country. obviously, we want to see the moderate opposition, including followers of islam, be part of the future of syria. isis, in the way it has conducted itself, in the exclusionary way it has
conducted every bit of its operations, the way it kills anybody that it runs into from any of the other groups, i think, is beyond the pale. to make that absolutely clear. in terms of your two questions , and notnocide issue to get directly into the hits -- , the onlyy of bosnia crime that has been recognized at the international court is genocide, the murder of 8000 men in boys in sure bernie to -- srebrenica. before that time, horrendous war crimes, karen this crimes against -- karen this crimes against -- horrendous war crimes horrendous against humanity. in other situations, like cambodia, where 2 million were killed, it may not have been a genocide. i don't think we should place
these crimes on a hierarchy, the kind of crimes that have been committed in syria are every bit as serious as those have -- that have been committed elsewhere in situations where there was a recognized genocide. to have a genocide, you have to show a desire to kill all of the innis, at least the sunnis significant part. you have to have crossed that particular line. as focus on that issue, opposed to the mass killings of civilians on a political or other kind of basis. it is to get caught up in legalisms. fundamentally horrible atrocities require international underse, requires that, the responsibility to protect, that talks about genocide and war crimes against humanity in the same paragraph. amnesty is evidence of the desire not to punish these crimes. it is also a signal that you don't want them prevented. obviously, if people go out and
commit them tomorrow, you say you will give them amnesty the next day. that is very good evidence. for command responsibility, you have to show he was in effective control of these units. buts not automatic, obviously extremely valuable evidence when it comes to holding a leader responsible as a commander. >> you know, in that connection in late 2011, i guess it was, president assad sat for an interview with barbara walters and his essential argument, if i recall it correctly from those days, was, look, bad things are happening, but i'm the president of the republic. i cannot be responsible for things that are happening at the working level. thatoe sth -- how does stand up as a defense in a general manner? >> it is what you generally here
in the number of these situations. it is what charles taylor said in regard to the -- se had not whose ca yet comes to verdict when -- yet come to verdict when he died, though most commentators felt he would be found guilty -- you show through the kind of linkage evidence that you have commands from a high level, you have witnesses who described a -- describe situations in which the leader was made aware of certain crimes and activities, then you have evidence like we just indicated that, despite these horrors that are out there, that people are receiving amnesty and they are receiving it if they committed the crimes. all of those things would tend to make the statement in front of barbara walters, in front of the court, eventually, that do not carry much weight at all. >> does the command evidence
exist in your view? >> yes. this is not -- this ia a -- is a hierarchical regime. this is a situation in which, clearly, there is a high command, a responsiveness through those chains of command. there is a situation in which documents have come out of the command centers at the highest and where the evidence of the crimes were notorious. clearly, there has been no, nothing, zero effort to hold anybody accountable no matter how vicious, no matter how horrid the conduct of the security forces of the syrian-arab republic. >> but stick a question up front -- let's take a question up front. proud alum of the
public international law and policy group. a lot of familiar faces. thank you, ambassador rapp. i want to know how your office or the administration in general is using accountability in syria to drive the parties to a political solution. secondly, what are the risks to the united states' interests in pressing harder on accountability? thanks. >> as i think i indicated earlier, the issue of accountability is essential to the question of the future of and those that are implicated in serious violations, that have blood on their hands, that are the kind of people that are not likely to be accepted by folks on the other side, whose brothers, sisters, mothers, sons they have murdered. syria has to basically exclude those kinds of individuals. even though there may be others that have been in positions, those that have taken action to
s, that thoseicie kind of individuals are the kind of people that could be leaders in the future of syria. that justice and is about individual criminal responsibility, not collective responsibility. it is not only à la whites -- only alawites. it is not only the people who believe in the future of caliphate. it is specific individuals that have taken on responsibility for and other acts against civilians. by excluding those individuals and prosecuting them, the society redeems itself and enables it to go forward. in places where there have been peaceful transitions after horrors, even in the capital city, it has been a situation where certain top level individuals are held responsibile.
-- responsible. we think that is consistent with the syria that is peaceful and not in continued conflict. consistent -- not be with having some paper solution that blows up the next day. we want real democracy, in which -- appropriate to that country, where people of every community have a voice and a part. >> we have a question in the rear. >> thank you. ambassador, for your remarks. i have a short observation i want to share with you. as you mentioned, we have been involved in the documentation on the ground. in the last tix months, we hired people full-time to document -- last six months, we hired people full-time to document. we been facing very important challenges. people no longer believe in the accountability. it is the fourth year.
the government of bashar al-assad used everything, even chemical arms against people. even the people who were activists i met with and worked with before i left, they are no longer believing. they left the country or are imprisoned or -- they don't want to continue this war. when you go to the security council and it gets vetoed easily, people are losing interest and losing faith. i don't want to go farther, but i can say that contributed to -- the inadequate action of the international community, regardless of how many people contributed ahat lot to force people to pick up arms to defend themselves and then they [indiscernible] how can we help people to stay on track facing very hard times in doing this? lots of people, when you tell them what i just said, oh, yeah, let the [indiscernible] lecture.easy thing to
>> if i could just add to that in a practical sense, quite aside from dealing with the question of frustration now that we are in the fourth year of this catastrophe. are you finding that there is a thatng sense of pessimism is actually putting a damper on your ability to collect pertinent information? >> i don't think there is a damper. as i said, i'm off to the region to a board meeting of one of the they support. they were concerned about their funding. they now have commitments for the coming year. anyone that has gone through this, that has lost family members, that has seen the situation go on and on, one horror following another, is naturally going to be
discouraged, as people might have in the dark age of the balkans war, which went on for four years in bosnia and eight years across the region. at times, there were people who said there would be no accountability, it would never happen >> you can establish -- happen. you can establish a court, but it will never get the top leaders. eventually, milosevic is arrested. even 16 years after his indictment. there is a helicopter being flown to the detention center at the hague. the day will arrive of justice in these situations. in latinth situations america, cambodia, where the crimes are committed 30 or more years ago, and things are happening. that is not much to live on at the moment >, but that commitmet is there in the way in which our government, the way that others, 13 members of the security council -- that would be an overwhelming majority out of 15 in a the are
-- in any other body in the world. that indicates the desire remains. i think it is important for all of us to talk more about the documentation, not to let others die with a secret that documentation is being built up. that's part of the reason i'm here and i encourage groups to get out and talk about what is being developed. obviously, the evidence which came out in january shocked the world. those who had worked with him and made a presentation in an informal session -- the consul was speechless, literally shocked by the nature of this kind of evidence. frankie, there is a lot more where that comes from -- frankly , there is a lot more where that comes from. we need to show the authenticity and the depth and the strength of that evidence and continue it
. fundamentally, it is unanswerable. just continue this effort and make it as visible as possible. as we've seen in other situations, the tide will turn. >> could use a little more about what you refer to as the caesar evidence? these photographs. provenance oftual this material? how did it arrive? where is it now? what is the status in terms of determining office and the city authenticity? >> let me describe what i can at this stage. i think it may be possible to describe more in the near future. we are familiar with the particular individual who was tasked with taking pictures of prisoners killed in the syrian government custody. these bodies were brought to a central location from 24 other
facilities in which they had been tortured to death in never varietyys -- death in a of ways. earning, bruising, starvation, it is a ration -- burning, bruising, starvation, evisceration. the most startling, horrible ways you can imagine. the total trove of documents, pictures, is in the tens of thousands. we are looking now at some 28,000. there is still an equal amount to be analyzed. thus far,s it appears we are talking about more than 10,000 individuals being killed in custody over the period from 2011 to 2013. men, but alsoely some very young men and boys,
and also women. and that kind of evidence in terms of the ability to analyze it to determine that there hasn't been any photo shopping of it, that it has not been it is possible through scientific and forensic methods to discount that. thus far, the indication is that it would be impossible to have fabricated this kind of material . having personally seen hundreds of the images of twisted bodies real wounds and really human beings of every shape and size, this is not phony evidence. it is shocking to me as a prosecutor. i'm used to evidence not being so strong, to there being some greater ambiguity. evidence of a kind of machinery, of a cruel death that we haven't seen since the
not sees -- the nazis. i am from the university of oxford and the center for international research and policy. i very quickly have two questions. the first is who shapes these investigations and to what extent it skews the investigative trajectory? you just talked about the caesar evidence. an investigation sponsored by qatar, in effect a party to the conflict in syria. they only looked at this evidence of torture. i think no one would discount the seriousness and gravity of that evidence. the legitimacyte and your ability to then make calls for accountability that
are taken seriously by all parties to the conflict, when you have a party to the conflict, in effect, sponsoring the investigation, which only looks at crimes committed by one side? the other issue is, you spoke to the prosecution of charles taylor. that takes us away from what you call command responsibility and towards this issue of aiding and abetting, which is, in effect, largely what taylor was prosecuted for. if there is to be accountability in syria, being that you have on one side the russian government supplying weapons to assad weapons beingse used allegedly to commit crimes on the other side, of course you have the saudis and the qataris arming the opposition. to what extent could any prosecution of international crimes committed in syria be taken seriously, where both supporting actors --
if you watch the pbs frontline operativeses, where have been trained by the united states government in qatar, they have elements of the u.s. government, onto the radar comen. -- u.s. government onto the radar screen. this brings us back to the question of accountability. i have no doubt in the integrity of you personally, to be pushing for accountability, but what obstacles do you then face yourself when you finally get down to where the rubber meets the road in terms of pushing your own government and other governments that you might work with to genuinely and independently pursue justice for crimes in syria? >> thank you for your questions, chris. in terms of the preliminary investigation that was published in january, in which my ,redecessors were involved
including the trial leader of the milosevic case, that was financed through a london law firm by the qatari government. that involved sampling a relatively quick peio -- period of time some of the images. they had at least 28,000 to look at at that time. from what i've seen in their work, they did a very good job and a very fair job, but my interest has been trying to make sure that all of the documents, all of the photos are available, and that they are available to law enforcement offices, as you've heard from the chair, the commission of inquiry now house -- has those documents. that is an unbiased commission appointed by the u.n., in which members have expressed differing views about responsibility of different actors.
there will be an invalid -- an ability to evaluate this entire trove and not in a way in which it is determined by one state or another. that's one of the things i wanted to see done. thatfar, the conclusions they have reached have helped quite well. more needs to be looked at. that is ongoing. to this question of criminal responsibility of leaders, in the trials taylor case and in many of these cases where you don't have a direct line of command, -- in the charles taylor case and in many of these cases where you don't have a direct line of command, you don't have the orders. there may have been forms of direct responsibility. you have pourable crimes being committed by a group that is being provided with significant aid -- horble crimes being committed by a group that is being provided with significant aid by a particular political actor. there are times when that support is substantial, when it
is knowing, and when it tables -- enables those crimes, you can obtain criminal prosecutions and convictions, as we saw in taylor. in other situations in which individuals may be supporting armed groups intending to win military victories, not intending to kill civilians, and taking efforts to prevent that kind of conduct and to train people and to vet the people that they train, then you are into a different situation. but certainly this question of supporting the proxy forces in the world is one that one has to exercise a fair amount of due diligence on, no question about it. one should not be in there enabling. there is armed conflict in the world. this area of prosecution and international humanitarian law is about situations where there are conflicts and where horrible
things are happening. the point is to protect civilians, protect the innocent, protect those who are outside of combat. conflicts, horrible there has been that kind of protection for all intents and purposes. in this one, there has not been. that's something we have to change. anyones of independence, that takes up the role in an international court house to swear that oath that i swore twice to prosecute basically without taking instructions from any organization or any government, people in national day,ms, at the end of the have that same expectation if it is a system based on the rule of law. on independence, as you know in sierra leone, we prosecuted the other side. chief norman, the head -- the democracy was very controversial. this group had committed mass attacks against civilians, where
he had specifically incited. though he passed away before the judgment, two of his co leaders were eventually convicted and they are serving sentences. it needs to be recognized that all sides need to be investigated. that's not to say that individuals who act out of passion and that there is always going to be situations in a battlefield where the innocent rrendoused, which is ho from a human standpoint, but when you talking about international prosecutions, you are talking about groups and others and governance -- governments that have targeted people by the thousands. so, just because -- if there are a million people killed over here and 10 people killed over here, one doesn't have evenhanded prosecutions by treating them the same. you prosecute to the massive organized criminal activity.
it is not just a political game where you try to balance it all. >> i am with the brookings institute. during world war ii, the o.s.s. hired -- had a philosophy which they tried to spread around to as many organizations as they could, and that is that, when you are dealing with a serious enemy, there are no rules. do you think that philosophy still applies? >> i don't think that philosophy still applies, though i know time, bill period of donovan served as deputy to justice jackson at nürnberg. he eventually left, but that is not because he did not want to
prosecute people. they had a person in -- personality conflict, truth be known. but there are rules in armed conflict is the basis of our nürnberg prosecution. as jackson said in his eloquent opening, if we try to hold them to different rules, th we applied -- different rules than to ourselves, we raise a poison chalice to our lips. these rules have to apply to all. and tactics in which one goes out and brutally rapes or civilians arent not tactics by which one gains success in conflict. it is a way that, in the end, an victory isattlefield one.a pyrrhic in the end, you lose the peace.
elsewhere,tan and the civilian casualties, even those not caused intentionally, but caused by the nature of bombardment, is a key aspect of our doctrine. we don't want easy -- innocent people dying, even unintentionally. it is going to happen in conflict. but the idea that it would be done intentionally runs counter to these rules and runs counter to good tactics. obviously, if you are talking about commando operations, to go leadership andir there ist chancellery, no rule against that. you can target the people that are responsible. you might say in old days, wouldn't do such a thing, it wouldn't be chivalrous. now, no question. we can take the fight to the enemy. we can target that actor that is distressing us, but not the
innocent people, even some of those that may be political supporters. we don't target those. so, there are rules and it is important that they be observed. and the united states, since nürnberg, has been a leader in making sure that those rules are applied. of course, fundamentally, they are in the geneva conventions, which have been ratified by every state in the world. north korea is in the geneva. these are universal rules. the rules, like the genocide convention, crimes against humanity, are part of customary international law, if not conventional international law, and applicable to everybody on this planet, even us. i am a summer associate at the public international law and policy group. you touched briefly on different judicial models that could be applied in the syrian contexts, ranging from domestic processes
to more hybrid or international approaches. i was hoping you could expand on that further. in particular, tribunals often have criticisms levied against them for being fairly remote from national, judicial processes or more generally the domestic population. i was wondering if you think that may be a potential vulnerability of a tribunal for syria, should international or hybrid models be pursued. if so, how do you think that could be realistically addressed? >> you raise a justified concern. spent years on the tribunal for rwanda. we were more isolated from that crime scene. we went over there all the time. it made our work less significant for the victims in the affected communities. in sierra leone, we managed to
do it in country in a mixed court with 60% of our employees sierra leoneans. we had people who knew every culture and i left -- and dialec t, who could tell us whether a witness was asking for benefits or telling the truth. you benefit from being as close as possible to the scene of the crime. the other thing in sierra leone was an outreach program where everyone in the country, even a country without television or newspapers that could print more than 500 issues, a time when more than 90% of the people knew what the court was doing. we could not have done that if we had been 1,000 miles away. when we moved taylor to the hague, which is what the regional leaders wanted, we tried to make up for it by having outreach meetings. we made up for it to a point, but better to be there and better to involve and seek the leadership of people within th
at country. rt, itsnia follow-on cou was kind of a model. nothing is perfect in this area, but with national judges trying their cases in sarajevo, representing each of their communities, and with internationals there for periods of time, it has delivered judgments for genocide at about 1/20 of the cost of judgments in the hague. that kind of model would depend upon a future syria like a future bosnia. do you want a bosnian syria? is a dividedsnia country and not perfect in terms of how it has been able to does -- to resolve its political issues, but you could end up with something like that in the future of syria, with different communities having substantial autonomy, but maybe with a state institution that included all these various entities to try these cases. if we could get there, that
would be a whole lot better than where we are today and, at the end of the day, would be my preferred alternative. i do think there are advantages to having internationals involved in the court. particularly when it comes to those survivors and the sort of sense that they have of whether it is going to be fair, that when they look in a particular group of judges and they say, oh, they are from the other group,the other ethnic they may not trust it. when you have internationals there, you can relieve that, to a point. you also can -- the nationals learn a lot about international law. the internationals learn a lot about the local culture and situation. if we could get there, that's where i would like to go. at the moment, not possible. we are looking at having cases go with the hague if we this french resolution.
it would not have been the icc. they have not charged more than four people in any situation in the world. they might charge a couple more. it would only be the top people. there will still be a need for a fair and independent court to try not everybody, but the hundred or more who have been leaders of serious atrocities. and that we should look to plant in the area. greater challenges -- what happens if the conflict goes on and on? will you have justice? that has stumped people as they look at the legal and policy operating.t a court but there are ideas that are out there. we haven't embraced any specific idea, except to continue constantly our efforts to find a way to show that there will be accountability and to begin the process of accountability. >> just out of curiosity, what kinds of ideas are out there for near-term fixes, while the
conflict goes on? >> the problem of vocalizing particular ideas, we begin to look like the u.s. is embracing them. but as i noted earlier, you have the senegal example, where senegal made an agreement with the african union to try a case that it had jurisdiction over in chad, etc. so, it is possible for a country with jurisdiction to enter into an agreement with an international organization potentially to have a court and then that court can be managed not just by that country and that international organization. you can have a broader committee that works to make sure it is independent and fair. those are decisions that would have to be made by the countries that might be interested in pursuing it. obviously, whatever anybody does in that area, we want to make sure that it is not something
that opens the way for these kinds of things to be created for political answers in the future. it has to be something that is not one country's justice, syria's justice, not a neighboring country's justice. it has to be justice for the people of syria based on international standards. but the other ideas -- the idea of the u.n. general assembly. we generally view the security council as responsible in these areas of peace and security. it has had the establishment of international courts for yugoslavia, rwanda. it is called -- it called for the creation of the sierra leone court. the security council is the place. the cambodian context, in the context of an agreement with a sovereign country, cambodia, the u.n. general assembly passed a resolution asking the secretary general to do that kind of negotiation. those are two precedents.
in the end, cambodia has critics in terms of whether it is sufficiently independent because of the negotiation that occurred . but legal, recognized structures that the united states contributes to and is involved with the management of were created through those mechanisms . every one of the things that i talked about today that has come up in the last 20 years were unthought of, unheard of before we established the ict why and -- the icty and ictr. think about how to do this. what is unthinkable as you could have 162,000 people dead and not have accountability. >> absolutely. >> thank you. opposition has set up a transitional justice commission. they are looking into some of these issues. had he reached out to them? are you working with them? is the united states funding them?
in the history of the united nations, there is one precedent only of the general assembly overruling the un security council. the war on korea. the united states was interested. they carried out the bulk of the operation. it ended up being an american war. deadlock at the un security council, could this happen again? would it be feasible? is it sort of like -- would that be an overstretched? -- overstretch? >> on the question of transitional justice, we support and are very interested in the work of the interim government. we have read what it has proposed and very much view that kind of work as essential to the future of justice in syria. if there are ways that we are not assisting more helping him i'd like to hear them.
-- assisting more helping -- assisting or helping, i'd like to hear them. there are others in the state department who could speak to the international law involved, but in these particular areas we view the security council, sad as it is, with the veto and the ability of china and russia to block resolutions, like the one withe icc as the organ responsibility, the only time there has been involvement by the u n general assembly was in the cambodian context, where the security council was not seized and there was some opposition to a cambodian court. the general assembly, including the regional countries, wanted to see this done and they asked the secretary-general to become intervened aeven second time when the negotiations work resulting in an agreement. but keep in mind that was in the
u.n. general assembly acting itself. at was the secretary general an agreement with a member state -- that was the secretary-general reaching an agreement with a member state, cambodia. the idea of the general assembly acting on its own is not something we've seen in the justice area. but as i said, the cambodian precedent is out there as one that people could look at, but oppositiones not an group or something like that. it requires sovereign states or states to be involved. >> question? steve, in terms of your own work plan, what's next? what are you looking at 90 days out from now? >> i don't want to change the subject to south sudan, central african republic, democratic republic of congo, but these are all -- .hese situations are out there
i will be in cambodia on august 7, where the judgment will be first judgment against the former chief of state and the former number two under pol pot, for at least the initial crimes committed during the khmer rouge period. trying to make sure that the resources are there to finish the work of that court. know,en we've got, you we've got fugitives. there are rwandans, like those that were key to the genocide. i'd like to get those guys in custody. every time you pick up somebody for what they did 20 years ago, it's a signal for somebody today, hey, they are going to be at your door in 20 years. do you want that? those efforts are out there. it is time to do what we can to strengthen these institutions. i was thrilled to get days ago when the general from the chief
of staff of the rwandan defense force, made famous in hotel rwanda -- in "hotel rwanda" becae he was the guy -- because he was the guy who would trade or bottlesves f of single malt scotch, he was convicted on friday. there are all of those kinds of things happening out there. but in syria, it consists of making sure that, just because there were two votes against it in the security council on may 22, that the signal is not that there is no accountability. the signal is there is accountability. we will find a way with, working with the syrian people, working with our partners, to ensure that these crimes won't go and answer -- go unanswered, whether they're committed by the regime, by isis, by others. and the day of justice will arrive, as sure as it has for -- and charles taylor. >> i think these words, the days
for justice will arrive, good way to conclude. i think this is something that, certainly in the context of syria, not only syria, but definitely in syria, we all need to believe this and, more importantly, in our own ways we need to work for it. very youall -- you all much for taking the time to join us this afternoon. please join me in thanking ambassador steve rapp. [applause] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] >> tomorrow on "washington journal," a journalist roundtable on the week ahead for congress with the christian science monitor's gail russell ferrechio ofsusan the washington examiner.
abouto'donnell talks the health care law and the need for primary care physicians. we will take your calls and you can join the conversation on facebook and put her. -- and twitter. "washington journal" live at 7:00 am eastern on c-span. tomorrow, the new america foundation looks at nsa surveillance and how it might be compromising honesty and security on the internet. two members of congress will be part of the discussion, along with a cyber security specialist and a privacy lawyer from google. that's live at 4:00 pm eastern on c-span three. -- c-span 3. later, we will hear from anders foghrasmussen -- anders rasmussen speaking at the atlantic council in washington, d.c. live coverage begins around 5:15
p.m. eastern on c-span. i thinknternet content, we would all agree, should remain free from regulation, especially by the fcc regulation. it is like confusing the conversation for the sidewalk. of course we want the conversation to be free and on regulated. the fcc has no place regulating content online. they've always made sure that the communication pathways stay open. today we have a regulated phone system or the vestiges of a regulated phone system. the fcc doesn't regulate what i say to you. they do make sure that communications pathway is open, affordable, nondiscriminatory. >> it is crucial to think about whether those platforms remain open the way they have historically. the internet has grown up as a network where anyone can communicate, anyone can get online. a little company can get access to the network and become, in some cases, like google or
facebook, a huge business. it is vital that that not change as the internet evolves. the fcc'sinions on open internet policy and the flow and speed of web traffic monday night at 8:00 eastern on "the communicators" on c-span 2. over 35 years, c-span brings public affairs events from washington directly to you, putting you in the room at congressional hearings, white house events, briefings, and conferences, and offering complete, gavel-to-gavel coverage of the u.s. house, all as a public service of private industry. we are c-span, created by the cable tv industry 35 years ago and brought to you as a public service by your local cable or satellite provider. watch as in ag, like us on facebook, and follow us on witter -- in hd,
[captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national able satellite corp. 2014] >> this week on q&a, our guest is dr. wayne ai frederick who talks to us about the challenges facing the school as well as his life and career as a cancer surgeon. >> dr. wayne ai frederick, why do they call howard the mecca? >> they call it the mecca for several reasons. it has been a place that has drawn people from all over the world and has been a source of great education